Parents of top skaters sitting in on all practices - Eteri's group

Momtoiceprincess

Rinkside
Joined
Dec 27, 2019
Sofia Akat'yeva mentioned in an interview that she was grateful to her mom who attends & watches all her practices... Surprised this is allowed in Eteri's group. I would have thought the parents trusted the coaches to get the job done & parents would be a distraction especially as the top level practices are so long?
Is this a thing with parents of top level skaters or only the pushiest most ambitious skating parents?
 

vesperalvioletta

Medalist
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Oct 20, 2017
Country
United-States
Sofia Akat'yeva mentioned in an interview that she was grateful to her mom who attends & watches all her practices... Surprised this is allowed in Eteri's group. I would have thought the parents trusted the coaches to get the job done & parents would be a distraction especially as the top level practices are so long?
Is this a thing with parents of top level skaters or only the pushiest most ambitious skating parents?

Eteri has spoken many times about how crucial parents can be in an athlete's training process providing they're the "right kind" of parent (i.e. they trust the coach to do their job and don't interject their own opinion). If I remember correctly, she had a lot of problems with Yulia Lipnitskaya's mother because she was too involved, but she's praised other parents for being there to support their kids emotionally and to reinforce the value of the training. I think Evgenia Medvedeva's mother spent a lot of time with her at the rink as well when Zhenya was still coached by Eteri, so for that camp I don't think it's necessarily abnormal.
 

Tolstoj

Record Breaker
Joined
Nov 21, 2015
From what i understood from previous interviews, Eteri keeps the doors open (which is rare from coaches), that said security guards don't allow other people to join in, and while yes parents can attend, they obviously have to accept coaches decisions.
 

Momtoiceprincess

Rinkside
Joined
Dec 27, 2019
To me as a skating mom I find it fascinating that she had an open door policy. I certainly would not be the type of mom to fit in, I think I'd be too busy watching who was getting the most attention from Eteri.... So I guess it does take a certain "type" of parent who's able to observe without comment or judgement!
 

hanyuufan5

❅*:・。.✨
Medalist
Joined
May 19, 2018
I don't think she necessarily doesn't trust the coaches. Maybe she's a big skating fan! Could be anything, really.

Also, I don't think the amount of attention a skater gets necessarily means that there's any favoritism going on, if that's what you're implying. I'm nowhere near Sambo 70 level, but I got substantially less attention in my group lessons because I was the one who learned the fastest and needed the least correction.
 

Ic3Rabbit

Patineuse élite et professionnelle
Record Breaker
Joined
Jan 9, 2017
Country
Canada
This isn't common. It actually surprises me that Eteri allows this, but the parents obviously have an agreement with her that they are there to watch only.
 

theharleyquinn

Medalist
Joined
Feb 25, 2014
I could see some of the logic in it preventing friction between the coach and the parents. If the parents see how their child is doing in practice, they know the basis of the coach's critiques with their own eyes rather than getting secondhand information from the student.
 

TontoK

Hot Tonto
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Jan 28, 2013
Country
United-States
I'm not necessarily a fan of Eteri or her pupils.

But I absolutely applaud her if she is maintaining an "open door" policy in terms of parents in the rink.

After all the scandals involving victimization of young people, I'll never respect anyone who sneers at "rink parents."
 

moonvine

Record Breaker
Joined
Mar 14, 2007
This isn't common. It actually surprises me that Eteri allows this, but the parents obviously have an agreement with her that they are there to watch only.

Parents weren’t allowed at Karolyi ranch. My kid wouldn’t be going somewhere I wasn’t allowed.

On another note, Chris and Alexa invite the public to watch them practice. Alas, they are in CA.
 

Ic3Rabbit

Patineuse élite et professionnelle
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Jan 9, 2017
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Canada
Parents weren’t allowed at Karolyi ranch. My kid wouldn’t be going somewhere I wasn’t allowed.

On another note, Chris and Alexa invite the public to watch them practice. Alas, they are in CA.

Ok, first of all, you have to know what a training environment for skating and especially elite skating is like before you compare it to the Karolyi Ranch because it's usually nothing like that.

Many elite coaches allow the parents to watch from the windows at the rink that overlook the ice. It's not like they ban the parents from the rink period and they cannot watch their kids and what is going on. It's not like they were locked up somewhere like the Karolyi ranch, that's absurd.

My mother could always watch me training if she wanted to/could be there. You have to remember many parents are working their behinds off to pay for their kids to even be on that ice, so it's hard, especially when many are single parents.
 

moonvine

Record Breaker
Joined
Mar 14, 2007
Ok, first of all, you have to know what a training environment for skating and especially elite skating is like before you compare it to the Karolyi Ranch because it's usually nothing like that.

Many elite coaches allow the parents to watch from the windows at the rink that overlook the ice. It's not like they ban the parents from the rink period and they cannot watch their kids and what is going on. It's not like they were locked up somewhere like the Karolyi ranch, that's absurd.

My mother could always watch me training if she wanted to/could be there. You have to remember many parents are working their behinds off to pay for their kids to even be on that ice, so it's hard, especially when many are single parents.

Thank you for explaining. I was picturing people having to drop their kids off and not come in. And I can only imagine the money involved. I’ve heard of people having to work multiple jobs just to keep their kids on the ice.
 

Ic3Rabbit

Patineuse élite et professionnelle
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Jan 9, 2017
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Canada
Thank you for explaining. I was picturing people having to drop their kids off and not come in. And I can only imagine the money involved. I’ve heard of people having to work multiple jobs just to keep their kids on the ice.

You're welcome!

Multiple jobs, taking out several mortgages, and more. I've said so many times on this forum about the sacrifices made for skating.
 

MaHa75

On the Ice
Joined
Aug 5, 2018
I have been in Sambo70 as a mother who watched the training (temporarily) and I can confirm that some parents there are much worse and tougher than coaches. Including physical punishment because only the result and perfomance count them. It was sad to watch.
 

Alegria

On the Ice
Joined
Mar 15, 2014
I think, parents can be more motivated than children and play a role of a bad policeman.
 

nussnacker

one and only
Record Breaker
Joined
Mar 16, 2019
I think Eteri wants parents to be there in case they are planning to learn new jumps as well. In her Interview with Pozner she said something about it, that when a new jump is learned she talks with a skater and their parents, and needs to assure they all agree to it.
 

mrrice

Record Breaker
Joined
Jul 9, 2014
This isn't common. It actually surprises me that Eteri allows this, but the parents obviously have an agreement with her that they are there to watch only.

It actually surprises me as well. Parents/ Visitors/Friends were allowed to watch the final 20 minutes of rehearsal when we would do run-throughs of the entire dance. Believe it not, the parents are usually the biggest distraction. If their students are rivals on the team, it will spill out onto their parents. I've seen parents fight more times than I can count. However, if it works for her.....I can't complain.
 

Sugar Coated

Final Flight
Joined
Apr 20, 2018
This actually makes me respect Eteri so much more. I often worry that her strictness borders on abusive for young children but having parents makes it safer. Parents can know what’s going on and intervene. Doesn’t mean there aren’t things in their training that I disagree with but if parents are allowed to be there it’s a good form of protection.
 

hanyuufan5

❅*:・。.✨
Medalist
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May 19, 2018
I have been in Sambo70 as a mother who watched the training (temporarily) and I can confirm that some parents there are much worse and tougher than coaches. Including physical punishment because only the result and perfomance count them. It was sad to watch.

Sadly, that's far from unique to Sambo70, or to figure skating for that matter. My dad (a social worker and recreational swimmer) nearly got into fights at the pool a few times when confronting parents like that and threatening them with child services.
 

el henry

Fangirl of men’s spirals and split jumps
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Mar 3, 2014
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United-States
I cannot imagine a rink in the USA in this day and age that would prohibit parents from entering the rink while their minor child was there. A lawsuit waiting to happen.:eek: So I do not find it “unusual” that rink access is “allowed” in any country or by any coach.

I can easily imagine rules that prohibit interference, kibbitzing from the stands and general overzealous Little League parent type activity.

And as has been pointed out, in the US many parents are too busy working to afford ice time rather than sit in a cold rink watching their kid.;)
 
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